The Most Meaningless Feedback People Get At Work

Feedback is a gift. People are super busy so when they take a moment to tell you something that could help you get ahead in your career, it’s something you have to appreciate. That is…if it’s helpful. There’s also a lot of feedback that’s just plain bad.

  • “Great job.” Career coach Phoebe Gavin says stuff like this is simply too vague. The person hearing it doesn’t “know why they did a great job, what exactly they did a great job at [...] It’s just not very useful.” If you’re planning on dropping a “keep up the good work” in an email, take another minute and get specific about what they did that was so great.
  • “I don’t like that.” The problem with this gem according to Gavin is that it’s someone reaching into “their own subjective experience and not bringing any other external factors in.” If you’re going to tell someone something is wrong, don’t make them have to guess what it is that they have to fix.
  • “You need to work on your attitude.” Management expert Kim Scott says better criticism makes it clear that a work problem is not “due to some unfixable personality flaw.” The feedback that is even better can be used as a tool to do something better. In other words, attacking someone’s identity is not constructive!

Find more common yet meaningless work feedbackHERE.


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